Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival (08/17/2014)

Sunday SnippetsMissed a couple weeks of Sunday Snippets, but I haven’t been blogging much, either. 🙂 Besides my weekly goals, I’ve done the following book reviews:

Jonah and the Great Big Fish

The Paleo Manifesto

Answering Your Kid’s Toughest Questions

I also posted about the Feast of the Assumption of Mary

Question of the Week:

What did you do for your summer vacation?

This year was our first vacation since we got married! My in-laws celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary and to celebrate we went to Ocean City, Maryland. It was a lot of fun spending time on the beach, and just hanging out together as a family. Unfortunately, i wasn’t feeling well during vacation so I missed out on a few of the water activities. But, I did get to visit with my dear friend who now lives in Delaware. It was a wonderful time, and just what I needed before gearing up for another two semesters of school. 🙂

Book Review: The Paleo Manifesto by John Durant

The Paleo Manifesto
From Book Description:

“The Paleo Manifesto takes readers on a thrilling ride to the Paleolithic Age and beyond, unlocking the health secrets of our ancient ancestors. What do obese gorillas teach us about weight loss? how can Paleolithic skulls contain beautiful sets of teeth? Why is the Bible so obsessed with hygiene? What do NASA astronauts teach us about getting a good  night’s sleep?  And how are Silicon Valley techies hacking the human body? Blending science and culture, anthropology and philosophy, John Durant distills the lessons from his adventures and shows how to apply them to day-to-day life, teaching people how to construct their own personal ‘habitat’ that will enable them to thrive.”

My Comments:

I first heard of the paleo diet a long while ago when I was learning about intermittent fasting. Then I discovered that I have a gluten intolerance, and while researching about that, I found even more information about the paleo diet. From what I have been reading, a lot of people who start out gluten free often progress their diets into a paleo-like diet. I can see why. After a few false starts, I have been fully gluten free for almost two months and I feel so much better. Now I am almost ready to take my diet one step further and try to eliminate sugar and processed foods, which the paleo diet promotes. Thus, when I had the opportunity to read and review The Paleo Manifesto, I jumped at the chance.

There are many things about this book that I liked, but there is one thing I want to address that gave me pause: his theory of evolution. Although Durant incorporates information from the Bible and various religious traditions, his history of the development of man is secular in nature. This sent me on a search to find out what the Catholic Church teaches about evolution. The church does not have an official stance on biological evolution, but it does have an official stance on human evolution. According to Catholic Answers, “It [ the Church] allows for the possibility that man’s body developed from previous biological forms, under God’s guidance, but it insists on the special creation of his soul.” In other words, it is okay to believe that the human evolved over time, but it must be coupled with the truth that God created and endowed every human being with a soul. For me, a lot of what Durant writes makes a lot of sense, but I also took some of what he wrote about the history of man with a grain of salt. I encourage you to do your own research on evolution, compare it with what is written in The Paleo Manifesto, and draw your own conclusions.

In the first part of the book, Durant gives a history lesson on the diet and lifestyle of man from 530 million years ago up to today. Each chapter is sprinkled with his personal experience, coupled with science and research.

One of the interesting things about this book is the discovery that the paleo diet is more than just a diet or eating like a caveman. It is a lifestyle. According to Durant, Paleo is about how a person eats, moves, sleeps, interacts with others and even body regulation. And that is what part two of the book deals with. In this section Durant gives detailed “instruction” in what (and what not) to eat, how to move and exercise in a paleo way. He also writes about thermoregulation, specifically about how we relate to heat and cold, and the importance of sleep and re-aligning our balance with the sun. This is my favorite section of the book. It is practical and insightful. I am not sure how much of the paleo lifestyle, besides the diet, I will incorporate, but I have already started experimenting. For example, Durant writes a lot about allowing oneself to wake up naturally, without the grating sound of an alarm clock. Well, I haven’t used an alarm clock in years since I am an early riser, so I took the next step and just got rid of my clock altogether. He also writes about why it is important to stand or walk as much as possible, and the dangers of sitting for long periods. So, I have started to stand or walk as much as possible, within the limits of my cerebral palsy.

In the final section of the book, Durant writes about the challenges of living as a hunter and gatherer. He also “takes on” those who oppose the paleo principles, particularly vegetarians and vegans.  Actually, he also talks about the vegetarian diet earlier in the book, debunking their health claims, and  in this section he specifically discusses their concern about the treatment of animals by the meat industry. He also gives suggestions on how to have (and teach our children to have) a healthy relationship with food.

Over all, the book is well-written, informative, and I would recommend the book to anyone interested in the paleo diet or lifestyle. I give the book four (4) stars.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Blogging for Books <http://blogging for> book review  program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

To learn more about the Catholic Church teaching on evolution go to:


Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival (June 29, 2014)

Sunday Snippets

It’s Saturday, which means another weekend of Sunday Snippets! This week I have three posts:

Weekly Goals

A mini-meditation for the Sacred Heart

Book Review: Journal of a Soul

Although not posts, I also put together two videos, a welcome video for my home page, and Five “Fun Facts” about me for my about page. I also did two more videos for new email subscribers (you will have to sign up to see those, hint, hint 😉 ).

Now for the question of the week: Tell us about your pastor.

We are really fortunate to have a holy, personable, and wonderful pastor. Father Jay loves the Church, loves his vocation, and loves the people of the parish. His homilies are thought-provoking, and he isn’t afraid to shy away from “controversal” topics. And yet, he does so with tact and kindness. He is truly a wonderful gift to the parish, and clearly, I like him a lot!

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival (June 8, 2014)

Sunday Snippets

I didn’t have any time for blogging this week so I only have one post for Sunday Snippets this week: my weekly goals.

Question of the Week:

What do you think of Catholic schools?  Are they an important part of passing on the faith to the next generation or are they an expense whose usefulness has passed, or something in between?

This is a tough question for me to answer. Growing up, I went to both public and Catholic schools depending on where we lived at the time, but I was very shy and reserved, so I was often bullied and picked on. Academically, however, the Catholic schools I went to were superior for the most part then our local public schools.

Nowadays, as most people know, I homeschool my son so I do not have first-hand experience of how the schools are – just from what people have told me. We also have had several Catholic schools in our area close down, including the one I graduated from eighth grade. And, unfortunately, I’ve heard of families where the children actually lost their faith going to Catholic school. So, my opinion is that, although not all Catholics schools should  be discounted,  parents do need to be discerning. Some Catholics schools are awesome and definitely play a part in passing the faith and others do not.

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival (June 1, 2014)

Sunday Snippets

Another week for Sunday Snippets. My two posts for this week include a book review for my friend Catherine Francis’ new book, Christian America: Shattered Dreams in a Veiled Society and a “blurb” about the Ascension.

Question of the Week:

May is the month of Mary.  Are there an Marian devotions other than the rosary which you use?

Every Saturday in May, and sometimes other Saturdays of the year, I pray the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Also, one of my prayer books, Handbook of Prayers, contains a series 31 days of short prayers/meditations for the month of May that use.


Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival (May 25, 2014)

Sunday Snippets

It has been a long time since I’ve participated in Sunday Snippets and I’ve missed it terribly! Thankfully, spring classes are over and I only have one class during the summer; therefore, I should be able to participate more regularly.

Of course since I rarely blogged the whole 4 1/2 months of classes, I didn’t really have anything to link up. In any case, here are my two posts, both reviews:

The Gift of Love by Amy Clipston

A Subtle Grace by Ellen Gable

Question of the Week:

What are your plans this summer?

My in-laws are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary in August. They are having a special mass to renew their vows, and have a party; however, everyone in the family is also taking a trip to Ocean City, MD for 5 days. It is our (my husband’s and mine) first real vacation in 9 1/2 years so we are very excited! Other than that, we plan do a few day trips, send Andrew to basketball camp (not overnight!) and spend time at the pool/beach.

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival (January 26, 2014)

I am linking up two posts this week to RAnn’s Sunday Snippets:

Do You Throw Tantrums at God?

What is the Cost of a Child? Priceless!

Question of the week:

Where do you get your Catholic reading material?

I get them through different sources such as Amazon and our local bookstore.

Book Review: Catholic Update Guide to Mary


Update to Mary

Book Description:

“Drawing on the trusted and popular Catholic Update newsletter, the Catholic Update Guide to Mary looks at the life of Mary and why she is so important to our Catholic faith. You will explore the various images of Mary, and her particular feasts celebrated in the Church throughout the liturgical year.”

My comments:

This is the second Catholic Update book I have had the pleasure to read and review. It is a short, catechetical book that gives an overview of the life of Mary and her importance in the Catholic faith. The book also outlines the various feast days of Our Lady, why and how to pray the rosary and various other prayers to Mary. And like the other Catholic Update books, each chapter ends with questions for reflection to help the reader deepen his or her understanding of the reading.

In my opinion, the Catholic Update Guide to Mary is geared toward the beginner Catholic or to those new to the devotion of Our Lady. Those of us who are knowledgeable in the Catholic faith or already have a deep devotion to Our Lady will not find anything new in this book; however, having said that, it never hurts to be reminded of the basics of our faith. 🙂

This is especially true in regards to our mental image of Mary. Chapter one, The Historical Mary, reminds us that Mary wasn’t some lofty, “high in the sky” woman who spent her days in deep contemplation. She was a normal, Jewish woman of her time, who cooked, cleaned and did all the other things the women of her time did. With one exception, of course. She was conceived without sin and in all things remained united to God. The Catholic Update Guide reminds us that all of us can look to Mary as a model in our own relationship to the Lord.

I recommend this book and give it three (3) stars.


This review was written as part of the Catholic book reviewer program from The Catholic Company. Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on Catholic Update guide to Communion. The Catholic Company is also a great online store for all your Catholic gift needs, such as baby baptism and christening gifts. You can also find a wide selection of Catholic Bible Studies for both parish groups and individuals, as well as a variety of other Catholic Bible study resources.


Weekly Goals

Set Goals

Here’s how I did last week:

1. Pray the rosary at least twice.

2. Get up by 7:00 am each morning.

3. Keep up with the readings and assignments for my classes. Get ahead with some school projects.

4. Blog at least twice.

5. Finish reading the Catholic Update guide to Mary (affiliate link) (Will be posting review this week.)

Here are my plans for this week:

1. Pray the rosary at least twice.

2. Get up by 7:00 am each morning.

3. Keep up with the readings and assignments for my classes.

4. Blog at least twice.

5. Post review for the Catholic Update guide to Mary (affiliate link).

6. Take Andrew to CCD and homeschool Co-op.

What are your plans for this week? Let us know in the comments or head over to Money Saving Mom and share them with us!

Weekly Goals

Set Goals

I got a lot of stuff done this week but not everything from this list:

1. Pray the rosary twice this week.

2. Get up by 6:30 am each morning.

3. Keep up with the readings and assignments for my classes.

4. Keep Andrew on track with his home-school assignments.

5. Blog at least twice  this week. (No blogging done this week except last week’s goals…)

6. Start reading the Catholic Update guide to Mary (affiliate link). (Didn’t finish it, but I got it started at least!)

7. Take Andrew to CCD.

8. Take Andrew to the homeschooling field trip. We are going to the Philly Soft Pretzel Factory! Andrew had a blast! He and his group learned the process of making pretzels, got to try their hand at shaping the dough and of course brought home some pretzels to enjoy. 🙂

I am keeping my goals really small this week. Michael took Andrew on the road with him this week so he will be doing home-schooling with Andrew and I have a few days to focus on my school stuff. It will be a good experience for Andrew to see his daddy in action at work!

1. Pray the rosary at least twice.

2. Get up by 7:00 am each morning.

3. Keep up with the readings and assignments for my classes. Get ahead with some school projects.

4. Blog at least twice.

5. Finish reading the Catholic Update guide to Mary (affiliate link) and write review.

What are your plans for this week? Let us know in the comments or head over to Money Saving Mom and share them with us!